First comes a crackling sound of crisp, thin phyllo, and then delicious syrup flows from between the layers. This is the beautiful allure of baklava. Most likely you have tried a classic version, filled with pistachios or walnuts. But there are more variations of this heavenly dessert, and each one offers a different journey to the sweet lands. We have rounded up our favorites below to help you embark on your next baklava journey.
The name kuru (dry) may suggest a lack of moisture. However, it merely has less syrup than the original, and more pistachio. This gives kuru baklava a lighter yet more intense flavor. It also has a longer shelf life, perfect if you want to grab a box on your way home or send someone a gift.
Why not combine two out-of-this-world desserts and make something new and great? Çikolatalı baklava (baklava filled with chocolate) is the modern meeting of these two delicious universes, and should be on your to-try list.
Havuç dilimi baklava
For those who promise themselves just one piece of baklava, go for havuç dilimi baklava (baklava sliced in shape of carrots). The generally larger slices (filled with classic nuts) are incredibly satisfying. It’s also the most popular dessert at the end of a feast at Nusr-et Steakhouse.
Şöbiyet looks like a folded handkerchief and what it hides inside is a delicious surprise, kaymak (clotted cream.) Next time you visit a baklava house, you can cheat on baklava for a little extra kaymak.
Imagine the thinnest layers of baklava phyllo in the shape of şöbiyet mentioned above. Now stuff it with pistachios and cream, until it's close to bursting. Just the thought of it can make your mouth water, right? Picture yourself eating it…
What if we put milk instead of syrup inside baklava? It would be called sütlü Nuriye. One story says this dessert came out during hard times in 80s’ Turkey to cut back on sugar consumption. Since people liked the output, it stuck around.
Get the best baklava in Istanbul
Originally hailing from Gaziantep, Karaköy Güllüoğlu is an institution for baklava. The well-known location in Karaköy serves nearly all kinds mentioned here and is usually packed. They even have gluten free baklava, as well as a sugar free renditions for people those watching their diet. Rıhtım Caddesi No. 3-4, Karaköy; T: (0212) 293 09 10
Located right behind Güllüoğlu in Karaköy, the goods at Köşkeroğlu are sometimes overlooked but are truly exceptional. Make sure to try the baklava in house, as it arrives perfectly on a warm plate. Mumhane Caddesi No. 2/2, Karaköy; T: (0212) 245 52 45
Gaziantepli Baklavacı Bilgeoğlu
If you are on discovery in Kadıköy, make sure to visit this small baklava house right in the middle of the busy market. Their kuru baklava is particularly famous. Muvakkithane Caddesi No.56, Kadıköy; T: (0216) 336 00 49